The best time to visit South Carolina is – well – anytime!
With its four distinct South Carolina-style seasons and depending on which part of the state you visit, you can enjoy the exciting outdoor activities and adventures each season brings.
While South Carolina is best known for its miles of sandy beaches, beautiful golf courses, and historic cities, there is much more to discover.
Nestled in the south-eastern region of the USA, South Carolina is bordered by Georgia, North Carolina, and the Atlantic Ocean.
Within South Carolina, from east to west, are three main geographic regions, the Atlantic coastal plain, Piedmont, and the Blue Ridge Mountains in the northwestern corner of Upstate South Carolina.
Springtime arrives all over South Carolina just a little later (mid to late March) in the mountains and earlier on the coast. Wherever you live or visit in South Carolina, spring is a beautiful time of year with gorgeous weather and perfect temperatures. The average temperature in April is 70F, perfect for touring and enjoying the great outdoors.
Nature is bursting forth with Dogwood buds and Yellow Jessamine blossoms. Wildlife sightings are common along the salt marshes, and folks are tuning up their bicycles and stuffing their picnic baskets, getting ready to immerse themselves in the fragrant beauty all around.
Head Upstate to enjoy adventure hiking and cycling. Trout fishing and angling on the Chattooga River promises spectacular scenery and a good pan-fried trout dinner.
Spring breakers flock to the coastal beaches and sandy Sea Islands to enjoy the warm days and seaside activities. Beach season in South Carolina can begin as early as March and April and continues through fall.
A visit to South Carolina should include a visit to the coast. With miles of pristine beaches, award winning restaurants, museums, and countless activities – like hundreds of golf courses – the charming seaside towns of the state offer something for everyone.
July and August are the hottest months in South Carolina, so be prepared. Wear a hat, light clothing, and sunscreen.
If you prefer a more serene and natural summer trip, head Upstate to the Blue Ridge Mountains to one of the beautiful state parks. Here you can camp, hike, rent a cozy cabin, explore cascading waterfalls, and test your paddle skills with some white-water rafting. Zipline across the tree canopy and then cool off in a mountain swimming hole.
Fall colors are breathtaking all over the state. Daytime temperatures are comfortably cooler – as in 70 degrees – so some sightseeing, hiking, pumpkin-gathering, apple picking, and corn maze exploration are just suitable for family outings.
The Blue Ridge Mountains’ scenic lookouts may offer the most enthralling views of fall’s colorful foliage palette.
Looking for some Lowcountry charm for two? Stay in one of Beaufort’s romantic hotels or inns. Spend the days and evenings shopping and exploring the town’s historic district. If you are there in early October, you can enjoy the fun and food at Beaufort’s Annual Shrimp Festival.
Skiing, sledding, and snowboarding are popular Upstate in the Blue Ridge Mountains because it snows there. But, of course, some folks find a cozy cabin with a crackling fire and some hot chocolate to be the best way to relax when it’s cold outside. But you can have it all!
The Lowcountry towns and cities are likely to be enjoying winter temperatures in the 40s and 50s range. January and February are the coldest months in South Carolina, but they are warmer than other state winters. So take a jacket and be prepared for whatever comes as you explore the quaint seaside towns.
December is a time of festivals and seasonal holiday treats. The kids will love it!
Local travel tips for South Carolina
Make sure you research any area you plan to visit before arriving. Your GPS might not help you much if you’re driving somewhere unfamiliar. Check out a map for accurate directions and helpful features like gas stations, lodging options, museums, etc.
Check on road closures before heading out and always stay within the posted speed limit. It’s wise to avoid heavy traffic areas during rush hours.
When visiting South Carolina, make sure you bring comfortable shoes. With so many trails, parks and city cultural offerings you’ll spend your day walking around to experience it all.
Bring cash when you travel. You never know when you’ll run into a store that doesn’t accept credit cards. Also, keep an eye out for ATMs when you’re out and about, especially in rural locations.
Plan Ahead: When planning to travel to South Carolina, here are some things to consider:
- Check out the weather before heading out.
- Pack plenty of snacks.
- Know how much money you will spend on lodging/entertainment/food.
- Be aware of any special events taking place during your stay.
Best things to do in South Carolina
South Carolina has many wonderful attractions including beaches, mountains, rivers, wildlife, and more. Here are some of the top things to do in South Carolina:
Beaches: See beautiful sunsets and amazing sunrises from the beachfront.
Hiking & Bicycling: Take in the beauty of nature while getting fit.
Museums: Visit the different museums across the state and learn something new about history.
Rivers: Cruise along the coast to get a taste of the waterway.
Wildlife: Spot animals such as deer, eagles, and turtles.
Other Attractions: Explore the cities of Charleston and Beaufort, which have historical landmarks, great restaurants, and boutique shops.
Experience Beaufort with a Discovery Visit
Interested in learning more about Beaufort SC and the Lowcountry? Here at Celadon Living, we’ve made it easy for you to enjoy this beautiful seaside town.
Beaufort is a small town loved and lauded by many – Southern Living and Coastal Living both frequently mention Beaufort as the standard to which all Southern towns aspire; National Geographic considers Beaufort to be one of America’s Top 50 Adventure Towns; even Garden and Gun became so enamored with the small-town charm that Beaufort is featured first on their list of “Southern Dream Towns.”
Yet even with all of these accolades and recommendations, we know you need to experience it yourself. A Celadon Discovery Visit is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the daily life of the Lowcountry and get to know Beaufort and Celadon as your potential new home.
For the three days and two nights of your trip, you’ll stay at your choice of three of our favorite spots in town:
The historic and famous Rhett House Inn, an award-winning local Bed and Breakfast, is a uniquely Beaufortonian establishment located inside a restored antebellum mansion. The Rhett House has hosted movie stars such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock, Robert Redford, and Barbra Streisand, who visited our little hometown while filming the movies we’ve all come to love, such as The Prince of Tides, Forrest Gump, The Big Chill, and The Great Santini.
You’ll receive a champagne welcome, homemade dessert each evening, and a hearty Southern breakfast each morning, prepared by Beaufort’s own Chef Beverly. Freshly baked cookies are available throughout the day, along with ice-cold lemonade and sweet tea – perfect for after a game of bocce ball, croquet, or badminton, all of which are found on the Rhett House grounds.
Explore the pristine coastline found at Hunting Island State Park, one of the few maritime forest beaches in the America. Take in incredible sunrises and sunsets, meander walking trails, or check out the historic lighthouse open daily for tours. This beach is a mere 30-minute drive from Celadon and was recently awarded second place in USA Today’s list of Top East Coast Beaches.
Perfect your swing at one of the many terrific golf courses in the area. Traditions has spectacular views. Sanctuary boasts a 20-lane driving range, and Lady’s Island Country Club features a full-service restaurant to replenish you after a day on the links.
If you like to mix education into your vacation, Beaufort’s got you covered, with several local museums, such as the Verdier House – located in one of few mansions that survived the South’s occupation by the Union armies during the Civil War. This museum is open Monday-Saturday from 10:30 am-3:30 pm, and guided tours are available by appointment. Another must-see is nearby Bluffton’s Rose Hill Mansion. While reservations are required, this 1858 Gothic Revival-style private home gives tours Monday-Friday and hosts many events for local organizations.
Now it’s time to show you why Celadon is the perfect place for you in Beaufort! We’ll take you on a thorough and personalized tour of our Lowcountry neighborhoods (where you can check our available homes and homesites), lovely parks and trails, Celadon Club, and more.
Anytime is the best time to visit the South Carolina Lowcountry!